Netbook Privacy Screen Protector

February 28, 2010

in News

As a regular train commuter my NC10 comes in very handy on a day to day basis. I can use that hour each day far more productively than ever before. And thanks to a mobile broadband connection I can even stay online too!

However, although many commuters seem happy to read and edit private documents in full view of the rest of the train (and I’ve seen a few things that should definitely have stayed private!), I have always felt very self conscious.

Whether tapping my password into gmail so that I can catch up on my inbox or reading confidential work related documents I always feel as though the innocent looking gentleman next to me is secretly recording my details!

Netbook Privacy Screens
I heard about privacy screens for laptops a long time ago but there weren’t any netbook sized ones around at the time. Fast forward a few months and whilst looking for something entirely unrelated I spotted one on the Ultimate Netbook site. Check out the direct link here.

At just over £20 this did seem a little expensive to me but I took the plunge in a spontaneous act of retail therapy.

Are laptop privacy screens any good?
The filter was easy to fit and was the perfect size. A couple of plastic holders can be stuck around the edge of the netbook and then the privacy filter can slide right in. For something more permanent, double sided sticky strips are also included in the package. You can tell that the filter is in place, but it isn’t much of a hindrance to normal viewing. The particularly fussy might not appreciate the slight loss of clarity in normal use.

So how does the filter do at blocking out stray eyes? It seems to do the job OK but I guess I was a little disappointed by the transition from clear to dark. The allowed viewing angle was a little wider than I expected. That said, I am typing this on the train and as long at the netbook is on my lap rather than the table the screen does appear opaque. When placed on the table the person next to me could probably get a reasonable view if the screen brightness is up, but when it is low they are going to struggle to read anything clearly. In fact the person next to me seems to be trying now!

The following video gives a quick idea of how it looks:

Privacy
Not the perfect solution, but I will continue to use it. At least it will provide me better protection than the lady I was sat next to on the train home on Friday had. In front of a train packed with 100s of people she proceeded to read out her credit card details, name, address, security codes and everything else whilst on her mobile phone! I guess with easy targets like that us more careful people have a better chance of staying safe!

Alternatives?
Has anyone got any experience of other product that offers the same kind of privacy screening? If so then please post below or let us know in our netbook accessories forum area.

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